City of Washington Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Mark Skornia says the Highway 47 bridge should remain open this weekend and into next week.
“The caveat is that decision is based on the information we have right now,” Skornia told The Missourian. “We are right on the bubble and hope to keep everything open.”
Skornia added overnight Thursday, floodwaters did cover Highway 47 north of Washington, which prompted the Missouri Department of Transportation to close the road between Route D at Marthasville and MO 94 at Dutzow in the area many locals know as Diermann’s farm.
That area has been monitored by MoDOT for nearly a month. The Missouri River crested Thursday at Hermann, and water did go over the road enough near Marthasville for it to remain closed Friday.
Depending on river levels, it is not anticipated to be a long-term closure and MoDOT is referring residents to the online map at www.modot.org for updates.
The intersection of Highway 47 and access to Dutzow and Highway 94 at the Lake Creek intersection is still open. Since the water is still in the banks at the creek, Skornia said that should keep the bridge open.
“There are detours around to get to Marthasville by taking Highway 94 to Highway TT to Highway D,” he said. “Also, Bluff Road pretty much parallels Highway 47.”
Within the Washington city limits, Skornia said the only area of concern is the intersection of Main Street and Tiemann Drive, but that concern is low.
“There will be very little, if any water in the intersection,” Skornia said.
Although the National Weather Service (NWS) predicted a Missouri River crest at 29.8 feet on Saturday morning and then a rapid drop to about 20 feet by Tuesday, June 18, Skornia doesn’t think the drop will be that rapid.
“We’ve been informed Ameren will be releasing water from the Bagnell Dam in the next few days,” he said. “That water will come down the Osage River and back up into the Missouri.”
Skornia added even as the waters do begin to drop in coming weeks, there will most likely be additional up and down fluctuations and the sustained floodwaters are causing stress on area levees since rivers and creeks have been in flood stages for the past three or four weeks.